Skip to main content

Mishaps and Rescues Mid-Atlantic April 2011

Recent Coast Guard Responses

Spreading the Word

Coast Guard Auxiliarist Thomas Nyman, a member of Flotilla 8-1 in Ocean City, N.J., speaks to attendees at the 32nd annual Atlantic City Boat Show in February. The auxiliary was at the show to inform the boating public about the responsibilities the Coast Guard has off New Jersey.

Image placeholder title

Boat found adrift, sailor missing

Virginia Beach, Va.

Coast Guard and local agencies searched for a missing person after a good Samaritan reported finding the sailing vessel Wampeter adrift in the vicinity of Little Creek Inlet Feb. 3 with no one aboard.

At approximately 8:20 a.m., Coast Guard Sector Hampton Roads Command Center watchstanders received a report from a crewmember aboard the fishing vessel Markim II that he found an approximately 40-foot sailboat drifting toward the rocks with its lights on and engine running.

Two 25-foot response boat crews, a 45-foot response boat crew from Coast Guard Station Little Creek and a Coast Guard HH-60 rescue helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., were initially dispatched to the scene. Crews from Hampton Fire Rescue, Norfolk Police Department, Virginia Marine Police, Virginia Beach Police Department and Virginia Beach Fire Department assisted in the search.

To report any information regarding this case, contact the Coast Guard Sector Hampton Roads Command Center at (757) 638-6635.

Mineral oil spill


The Coast Guard and local agencies responded for several days to a mineral oil spill that occurred Jan. 23 in the Potomac River near Alexandria, Va.

Approximately 1,500 gallons of an estimated 5,500 gallons were recovered from the waters of the Potomac River after a transformer at the Pepco substation began leaking, with a remaining 4,000 gallons unaccounted for.

Coast Guard Sector Baltimore's incident management division members, who were notified by the National Response Center, worked with Pepco and the hired contractors, Triumvirate Environmental and Clean Harbors, to continue efforts to contain and collect the oil.

Currently 2,000 feet of hard containment boom, 1,700 feet of absorbent boom and 750 feet of sweep, which consists of pads strung together, were deployed to the affected area.

The oil sheen is reported to extend approximately 2,000 yards north of the Pepco substation and as far south as the Woodrow Wilson Bridge.

"At this point, what we can see out there is mostly oil sheen," says Petty Officer 1st Class Anthony Matulonis, a marine science technician at Sector Baltimore. "When oil spreads out, it starts to become unrecoverable because the surface area is too thin. The good news is that over time, nature will start a biodegradation process, which is basically when sunlight, wave action and wind naturally remove the oil."

This article originally appeared in the Mid-Atlantic Home Waters Section of the April 2011 issue.